Happy Trails Dr. Alviar

Author: Janet Alviar, DVM

February 11, 2021

Dear Cat Folk,

I’ve been pushing aside reality for a few months now, but it’s rapidly closing in. My family and I are moving to Missoula, Montana, and my last day at Cats Exclusive is just a few days away.

In many ways, this move is a dream come true—Missoula is only a few hours from my Idaho hometown and my farm roots. I’m a small-town girl at heart, and after spending my entire adulthood thus far living in cities, the slower pace of life and the woods are calling.

It’s bittersweet, however. Every time I think of moving, a torrent of beloved cats and people starts pouring into my head and heart. It’s hard to write this without listing so many of you who have touched my life, so I’ll have to settle for some generalizations.

To the people who have entrusted me with the care of your cats over the last six years: I am so deeply honored to have known you and your kitties. I cherish your wonderful stories and memories, from antics to creative names (and clothing, you Sphynxes!) to soul connections.

To my amazing colleagues: I have learned so much from you, and am profoundly grateful for the opportunity to work together—through the highs and lows, the long hours, and the high standards. The level of dedication and the excellence of medicine you bring to Cats Exclusive are extraordinary, and you have made me a better veterinarian and a better human.

To the skilled nurses, receptionists and management team: Your love for cats and your wisdom and gentleness supporting them through visits is unparalleled. Thank you for being so astute and sensitive, and for inventing thoughtful and creative ways to attend to kitty comforts while they stay with us.

To the people who have been so gracious through the COVID era of curbside service: Thank you for making the best of a difficult situation. I know it’s stressful to hand over your kitties and not be present with them during their visits, and it’s harder to convey our care through a phone conversation rather than in person. It’s been hard on us in here too. We miss putting people faces to cat faces, and collaborating on cat care in person.

To the cats who are no longer with us: Thinking of you brings instant tears. Your lives have meant so much to your people, and you are profoundly treasured. You dear, magical, wonderful beings—your time on this earth continues to be felt and we are better for having known you.

Maybe I'm just not ready to say goodbye, but Missoula's merely a peaceful drive away, so I may be back to do relief work at Cats Exclusive on occasion.

Wishing everyone slow blinks, purrs, and warmth,

Dr. Janet Alviar